William Bridges was born in Woore, Shropshire, England. As a young man, he apprenticed to the coach making firm of Baxter & Pierce of Long Acre, London. Napoleon’s travelling carriage was brought there, after the Battle of Waterloo, where the young William made a drawing of it. In 1819, he married Elizabeth the family moved to Valparaiso, Chile to seek their fortune.
He found employment as a manager of Lord Cochrane’s estate. In 1823, Elizabeth died giving birth to their second child, the child died also. With their first son in tow he moved back to England working for Hobson & Co. as a coach maker. It was then when he found his true calling.
What you may not know about William Bridges Adams is that he patented an improved carriage spring. With that invention, he was financially secure so he founded a new company. He then set his sights to bigger things.
He invented the first railway fishplate (a metal bar that is bolted to the ends of two rails to join them together in a track). While improvements have been made the concept is still his.
Until tomorrow give someone the free gift of a smile.